The Mother

Director: Roger Michell
Year: 2003
Country: UK
Running time: 112 mins
UK
Screenplay: Hanif Kureishi
Photography: Alwin Kuchler
Editor: Nicolas Gaster
Music: Jeremy Sams

With: Anne Reid, Daniel Craig, Steven Mackintosh

Festivals: Cannes (Directors’ Fortnight) 2003
Made by talented British director Roger Michell (Persuasion, Notting Hill) The Mother features a relatively unknown sixty-something British actress named Anne Reid in the title role, and she's terrific. The perceptive, no-holds-barred script about a widow suddenly reawakened to her sexuality by a younger man was written by Hanif Kureishi.

“A finely-shaded performance from veteran actress Anne Reid is the shining centre of The Mother, a shrewd and believable portrait of an older woman’s belated revolt… A thoughtful companion piece to the kind of themes previously explored in Shirley Valentine, it unfolds with a graceful sureness of touch… Born into a generation of women willing to accept their fate and do their duty, Reid’s May is fearful that the excitement and passion of life have passed her by… Attentive and loving, May is sleepwalking through her own life, concealing hidden depths and feelings that nobody may ever know about. The death of her husband and the kiss of a handsome young prince are the two things that awaken this sleeping beauty.” — Allan Hunter, Screendaily